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NFF to Ban Use of Stadia for Non-sporting Activities Nationwide




An NFF official, Chidi Offor-Okenwa, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Enugu on Wednesday that the action had become necessary to cut down the cost of maintaining the stadia.

Offor-Okenwa, who is also the Chairman of Enugu State Football Association, said that the federation had succeeded in stopping the state government, political parties and other interest groups from using the stadium.

“The good people of Enugu State and of course, the government of Enugu State appreciates the fact that stadia in Enugu State are purely for sporting activities.

“We (presently) don’t have a record of hosting religious activities at the main bowl of Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium.

“In Enugu here, the stadium is actually meant for football; it is meant for athletes, it is meant for indoor games and we appropriately put the facilities in use in that vein.

“So also for Rangers (International FC, Enugu) camp and of course the UNEC (University of Nigeria Enugu Campus) stadium.

“We ensure that we don’t conduct any religious activity; any unsporting activity in our facilities.

“And we take that message to all the nooks and crannies of Nigeria to ensure that the (sporting) facilities last and serve the purpose (for) which it was built with the tax payers money.’’

He said that the federation had warned stadium managers against “unsporting and extraneous activities’’and its implications on the development of sports.

NAN reports that non-sporting activities such as religious, political and social gathering had led to the deterioration of most sports facilities, especially stadia in the country.



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NFF appoints Finidi George as Head Coach of Super Eagles



The Board of Nigeria Football Federation on Monday approved the recommendation of its Technical and Development Committee to appoint former ace winger Finidi George as Head Coach of the Senior Men National Football Team, Super Eagles.

George, who spent 20 months as assistant to José Santos Peseiro before the Portuguese voluntarily left the post following the accomplishment of Africa Cup of Nations runner-up position at Cote d’Ivoire 2023, took charge of the squad in interim capacity during two friendly matches in Morocco last month.

His squad edged Ghana 2-1 in the first match, ending an 18-year winless streak against the Black Stars, but then lost 0-2 to Mali in the second game.

George, a member of the so-styled ‘Golden Generation’ that won the 1994 Africa Cup of Nations tournament in Tunisia and emerged the second most entertaining team in Nigeria’s debut at the FIFA World Cup finals in USA the same year, won 62 caps for Nigeria, including featuring at the 1994 and 1998 FIFA World Cup finals. He also won gold, silver and bronze medals from the 1992, 1994, 2000 and 2002 AFCON tournaments.

The 52-year-old former Ajax Amsterdam (The Netherlands) and Real Betis (Spain) forward, who made a scoring debut for fatherland in an Africa Cup of Nations qualifying match against Burkina Faso at the National Stadium, Lagos on 27th July 1991, also featured for Calabar Rovers and Sharks FC in the domestic scene before heading to Europe. He assisted Rashidi Yekini (of blessed memory) to score Nigeria’s first-ever FIFA World Cup goal against Bulgaria in Dallas, USA on 19th June 1994.

George had actually scored the goal that took Nigeria to that FIFA World Cup debut, when he put Nigeria ahead against hosts Algeria in a crucial qualifier in Algiers on 8th October 1993. The match eventually ended 1-1 and earned Nigeria a ticket to the finals in America.

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PHOTOS: FG welcomes Super Eagles with breakfast



The Super Eagles have arrived in the Federal Capital Territory after their second-place finish at the just concluded African Cup of Nations final.

Players including Alex Iwobi, Ahmed Musa, Victor Osimhen, Ola Aina, Frank Onyeka, Calvin Bassey, Ademola Lookman, Kenneth Omeruo, Joe Aribo and Williams Troost-Ekong were at the welcome breakfast at Transcorp Hilton, Abuja.

Members of the coaching crew are also at the breakfast.

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‘The Ivory Coast We Beat In The Group Stages Are Not The Same Ones We’ll Be Facing Today’



“This is the kind of match where if either teams play the way they have been playing since the tournament begin, they should forget it.

If Osimhen doesn’t direct one of his 20 headers into the net and Lookman see free space to smash ball into net but wants to use his short legs to do a Papilo round the keeper, wo, we should forget it.

They should take their chances as they come and fast enough or else wahala go dey.

The Ivory Coast we beat in the group stages are not the same ones we will be facing. Those ones have extra motivation to win having come this far against all odds.

They have home advantage psychology. With thousands and thousands of their fans gingering them.

And they are looking for revenge.

Like I said, if we don’t take our chances, anything our eye see, we should take it as the will of God.”

— Hymar Idibie 🖊️

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